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Lessons in Fundraising:
Sales Techniques for Teenagers

by the AFRDS

Today, just as it has been for decades, thousands of American teenagers are fundraising to pay for their extra-curricular activities. But, getting teenagers enthusiastic about fundraising, or any school-related activity, can present a challenge. Here are some fundraising reminders to help motivate teenagers:

Pitch in for the team.

Fundraising should be a voluntary activity for students and promoted as such. Once they understand the personal and group rewards from active participation, most students are willing to step up to the plate. Focus on family, friends, and familiar neighbors. ItĖs safer and usually yields higher sales. In fact, most fundraising sales today are made to family, friends and parentsĖ friends and co-workers. Discourage solo selling without adult supervision. Even older teens should practice safe-selling techniques by working in groups.

Perfect an introduction.

Never start with the question "Would you like to buy..?" because the standard answer is ËNO.Ė Students should introduce themselves, their group and their group goal with major emphasis on the GOAL. WhatĖs the money going to provide? Student volunteers who communicate the organizationĖs purpose make better ambassadors.

Think like a salesperson.

Be positive. ItĖs not unusual for some kids to say "You might not want these." If they present the product in a positive light throughout the presentation, chances are better theyĖll make the sale.

Look "professional."

A nice appearance and identifying apparel adds credibility and helps make the sale. If possible, wear a group uniform or a tee shirt with school logo.

Say "thank you" for the support.

Remember to say "thank you for helping us meet our goal," and restate the goal.

Sources: B&O Band and Orchestra Product News July/August 1998 "Selling 101" The Official Football FundraiserĖs Guide, J. Alden Briggs, Jr., published by Boosters Clubs of America

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About the Author:

This article is from the Fall 1998 issue of the Fundraising Edge, an online publication of the Association of Fund Raisers and Direct Sellers and is reprinted with permission. Visit their web site at for more information and a look at the complete issues of the Fundraising Edge.

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